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What can I say?? I just love to bake!! Ever since I would go to Grandma's house as a little girl and bake highlight cakes or help Ninny make her famous vanilla cookies, I've been obsessed with baking! Not only from recipe books, but freestyle too! With a father as a chef, i suppose it is in my genes! Some of my favourite memories from growing up were those moments after dinner when my dad would get his sweet tooth pang and have me help him whip up a batch of toffee fruit kebabs, or irish caramels! I used to love how he never followed recipes, he always just knew what ingredients worked with one another and how to play with quantities. So, from an early age, i had learnt from the master and i was well on my way to bake on my own! When i was 7 years old, i used to bake chocoloate cakes to sell to the mothers of my friends when they came to watch our Saturday morning minkey hockey games! Before i knew it, i was being commissioned from my school teachers to bake cakes for them at $2 a pop! This blog holds just a few of my favourite tried and tested recipes which I've thoroughly enjoyed both baking and eating! So enjoy!!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Susan's Famous Hummingbird Cake!

It was my mum's birthday recently and as I had said to her 'I will make you ANY cake you want', she requested her favourite - a Hummingbird Cake.  Seeing as all of my worldly possesions, (including my favourite cookbooks of course) were en route in a shipping container from London, I didn't have my tried and tested recipe to hand - however - Susan, my very good family friend saved the day with her EVEN BETTER recipe which she kindly gave me and allowed me to share with all of you!  It's so deliciously moist and is wonderful with the cream cheese frosting, sprinkled with lightly toasted coconut to serve... Have fun!

Cooking Time:  1 hr 15 mins
Preperation Time:  20 mins
Serves:  A lot!

 - 3 cup SR flour
 - 1 cup good quality vegetable oil
 - 1 425g tin crushed pineapple
 - 1 225g tin mango (drained)
 - 3 bananas, mashed
 - 2 cups brown sugar
 - 1 tsp cinnamon
 - 1 tsp vanilla
 - 3/4 cup roughly chopped walnuts

Cream Cheese Frosting:
 - 225g cream cheese (cold)
 - 40g butter
 - 500g icing sugar
 - 1tsp vanilla
 - Toasted coconut flakes to decorate

1)  Preheat oven to 185'C and grease a large 25inch cake tin.

2)  In a bowl, mix together your crushed pineapple (with syrup), chopped mango, oil, vanilla and mashed bananas.

3)  In a seperate bowl, mix together flour, sugar, cinnamon and walnuts.

4)  Combine both bowls until all ingredients are mixed together, then pour into prepared cake tin.

5)  Bake for 1 1/4 hrs, or until lightly golden and springy to the touch. A testing skewer should come out with moist crumbs when inserted.

6)  To make the cream cheese frosting, beat together your cream cheese (cold from the fridge), butter, vanilla and icing sugar for about 5 minutes on high speed.  Be careful not to over beat, or else the frosting will be too runny.

7)  When your cake is cool, spread with the cream cheese frosting and sprinkle with toasted coconut flakes to decorate!

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